It’s time to really look at my blessings and be thankful. I can walk, talk, see, hear, touch, think, and do most anything my heart desires and then some.
As the school year closes I celebrate two years of retirement; where did the time go? It seems like only yesterday … no it really doesn’t seem that way. Teaching and working and following a minute by minute schedule for thirty-seven years, now seems like another lifetime ago. Did all I learned, all I taught, all I accomplished, all my students accomplished, all just fizzle away like the bubbles in a coke that’s gone flat? A tasteless drink that just doesn’t quite do anything but offer questionable chemical fluids for your body to absorb then reject as waste. No!
Tomorrow, and tomorrow, and tomorrow,
Creeps in this petty pace from day to day.
Thirty-seven years of steady employment challenged me physically, mentally, and spiritually; teaching blessed me, gave my life meaning, and provided purpose, direction, and structure. Within the structure, creativity blossomed, grew, and matured. Dear Lord, You created a space that was oh so right for me to offer my gifts and talents to all those students who were ready and willing.
The task of the excellent teacher is to stimulate “apparently ordinary” people to unusual effort. The tough problem is not in identifying winners: it is in making winners out of ordinary people. ~K. Patricia Cross
Writing became an integral part of my curriculum, as I wrote, directed, staged, costumed, and created characters from American history from the Founding Fathers and continuing toward present day. History Came Alive! Together my students and I learned about our ancestors by delving into the characters’ emotions, motives, problems, failures, and successes.
History is herstory, too. ~Author Unknown
I honed my craft on the job; I learned to edit, edit, edit. Definitions for words unfamiliar to my students were included in the script. Dialects particular for the time in history we were portraying had to be written phonetically. Stage directions, exits, entrances, prop lists, and lighting cues were also included within a script.
History is a symphony of echoes heard and unheard. It is a poem with events as verses. ~Charles Angoff
At one point I was writing six new plays a year; my classes performed six original plays a year; our school, students, parents, teachers, and administrators, became the audience who applauded our efforts with enthusiasm. I remember several times being stopped in the hall by students who would ask, “What’s the next play about?” Ours was not a captive audience, but a captivated audience!
The important thing is not so much that every child should be taught, as that every child should be given the wish to learn. ~John Lubbock
I did not write the first months after retirement; the computer represented part of my life as teacher; who was I now? I needed a reprieve; not that teaching was torturous; I just needed a break, a respite. I had to walk away before I could run back, giddy as a child who’s misplaced their favorite Teddy and found him right where he was left-waiting patiently.
Writing, I think, is not apart from living. Writing is a kind of double living. The writer experiences everything twice. Once in reality and once in that mirror which waits always before or behind. ~Catherine Drinker Bowen, Atlantic, December 1957
I thank You, Dear Lord, for allowing me the many opportunities to express my creativity through so many mediums. I was stretched; I was supported; I was elated; but more than anything I was proud, so very proud of my students, some of whom struggled with reading. I stretched them; I supported them; I saw the souls of these precious ones come alive for all to see, hear, and enjoy!
I can no other answer make, but, thanks, and thanks. ~William Shakespeare
If I never do more in this life I know I’ve done well; but I’m not through yet! Dear Heavenly Father, if You can use my writing to help even one soul who has struggled as I have … or can relate to some of my feelings, frustrations, happiness, joy, and yes, the peace that conversations with You, my Lord, bring to me … even me. I’m not through yet; I know that; You aren’t through with me either; I have so much more to learn. I am Your student; teach me; I’m ready and willing and very thankful! Amen
This is a most beautiful hymn of praise and thanksgiving.
Now Thank We All Our God
Author: Martin Rinckart (1636)
Now thank we all our God
with heart and hands and voices,
who wondrous things has done,
in whom his world rejoices;
who from our mothers’ arms
has blessed us on our way
with countless gifts of love,
and still is ours today.
O may this bounteous God
through all our life be near us,
with ever joyful hearts
and blessed peace to cheer us,
to keep us in his grace,
and guide us when perplexed,
and free us from all ills
of this world in the next.
All praise and thanks to God
the Father now be given,
the Son and Spirit blest,
who reign in highest heaven
the one eternal God,
whom heaven and earth adore;
for thus it was, is now,
and shall be evermore.
Any respite or temporary relief; a break in or cancellation of a painful situation.